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For Immediate Release

January 23, 2018

Hegemann Named Festival Director

Fort Fairfield native, Meg McLaughlin Hegemann has been named as the new director of the Maine Potato Blossom Festival. Hegemann has experience planning a variety of events, as well as a deep love for the potato industry and the festival that celebrates it.meg 350 “Working the fields gave me a connection to the land here such that no other place felt like home.” After decades in Missouri, Meg and her husband, Brad, moved to Fort Fairfield in June 2016. As director, Hegemann will work with existing volunteers and recruit new ones to facilitate the week long event. “The Festival doesn't just celebrate the town of Fort Fairfield, it celebrates an industry that in many ways defines the County. It takes cooperation from a lot of people and places to make it happen. I look forward to working together to make the 2018 Festival one of the best.” The 2018 Maine Potato Blossom Festival will take place July 14 – 22 with the parade on Saturday, July 21. To sponsor an event or volunteer, contact Hegemann at mpbf@fortfairfield.org.
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On Friday, May 29th, the Fort Fairfield Town Council unanimously chose James Risner as the new Town Manager after a three-month nationwide search that yielded several qualified candidates.  Risner, who is replacing outgoing Town Manager Michael Bosse, is a recent transplant to The County from Virginia. 

                “I retired on February 28th after more than thirty-one years of federal service, the last twenty-eight as a Department of the Army civilian,” stated Risner.  “My last position was a Pentagon Liaison for the Program Executive Office for Ammunition.  I began my federal service as an enlisted Marine, attaining the rank of Sergeant.”

                In addition to his public sector experience, Risner has over 14 years’ experience in municipal government serving in many capacities, including; 2 terms as a town councilor in Culpeper, Virginia, chairman of the town planning commission, member of the town and county joint board of zoning appeals, and chairman of the Rappahannock-Rapidan Regional Commission.

                Risner says one of his main goals as Town Manager is to improve economic opportunities for residents and the region. 

“We need to look at ways to attract a diverse mix of businesses that bring jobs that can support families,” he said.

While Risner’s retirement was short lived, he is happy to get back to work, this time serving his newly made friends and neighbors in the community he now calls home.      

                “My wife and I spent several years looking for a place in Maine to retire to,” he explained.  “Fort Fairfield has what we were looking for; a small town with a good quality of life, close to a hospital and university.  Folks have been very friendly and welcoming.”

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